PrimaLoft, Inc., a global leader in advanced material technology solutions, has today introduced PrimaLoft® Bio, the first synthetic insulation made from 100% recycled, biodegradable* fibres.
Developed over the last four years by PrimaLoft’s team of scientists and engineers, PrimaLoft achieved this textile breakthrough without affecting the performance characteristics of the insulation. In accelerated test conditions simulating a landfill environment (ASTM D5511), PrimaLoft® Bio fibres have reached near complete biodegradation in 394 days, a highly accelerated rate as compared to the negligible degradation observed in standard polyester, under the same conditions. This proprietary technology does not change the performance, look or feel of the garment and is expected to be available to consumers in fall 2020.
PrimaLoft® Bio fibres break down when exposed to landfill or ocean environment. PrimaLoft has enhanced the fibres to be more attractive to the naturally-occurring microbes found in these anaerobic environments. The microbes eat away at the fibres at a faster rate, returning the insulation to nature. The biodegradation process leaves behind water, methane, carbon dioxide and biomass (expired microorganisms, organic waste). PrimaLoft® Bio insulation will only biodegrade when exposed to the microbes in landfills or ocean water, thus, the insulation remains highly durable throughout its usable life cycle in a garment.
The idea was already born in 2014 from the PrimaLoft product management. After two years of research, it took two years to develop the process and more than a year of testing with an independent lab.
PrimaLoft® Bio expands upon PrimaLoft’s commitment to being Relentlessly Responsible, providing sustainable solutions throughout its business in order to lessen its impact on the earth. To date, PrimaLoft has saved more than 84.7 million plastic bottles from landfills and transformed them into premium insulation technologies. By 2020, 90% of PrimaLoft insulation products will have at least 50% post-consumer recycled (PCR) content, without compromising performance. Earlier this year, PrimaLoft introduced its first insulations with 100% post-consumer recycled material. Moving forward, PrimaLoft is working diligently and investing to reduce its footprint through the supply chain with an emphasis on finding solutions for reducing energy, carbon emission reduction, utilising biodegradable products and incorporating natural plant-based fibres in its products.
Combatting Textile Waste with Biodegradable* Fibres
What we’re up against
A better answer
Recycling alone is not enough. Insulation made from biodegradable* fibers combats plastic waste at the material level. Additionally, PrimaLoft® designs its insulations to endure and withstand the rigors of repeated, multi-year use – increasing its usable life cycle.
Find out more at primaloft.com/primaloftbio
PrimaLoft® Bio Quick Facts
What is PrimaLoft® Bio?
PrimaLoft, a global leader in advanced material technology solutions, is introducing PrimaLoft® Bio, the first-ever biodegradable* synthetic insulation — a proprietary technology that has the potential to transform the apparel industry. PrimaLoft® Bio will reduce the length of time our products remain in or are exposed to landfills and oceans, without compromising PrimaLoft’s product performance standards. Synthetic insulation was originally designed to withstand the outdoors; PrimaLoft® Bio is designed to turn insulation into the outdoors. PrimaLoft® Bio is part of PrimaLoft’s commitment to being Relentlessly Responsible.
What are the benefits?
PrimaLoft® Bio is a textile breakthrough that begins as 100% post-consumer recycled materials and, when it reaches the end of its usable life cycle, leaves behind 100% natural elements. In accelerated test conditions simulating a landfill environment, PrimaLoft® Bio fibres biodegrade* at a highly accelerated rate, as compared to negligible degradation in standard polyester, in the same conditions.
How Does It Work?
PrimaLoft has altered the fibres used to produce its synthetic insulation, without affecting their performance characteristics, to enable them to biodegrade at a highly accelerated rate. These fibers break down, when exposed to the right environment — like a landfill or the ocean.
PrimaLoft has altered the fibres to be more attractive to the naturally-occurring microbes found in these environments. The microbes eat away at the fibres at an accelerated rate, returning the insulation to nature! The biodegradation process leaves behind water, methane, C02 and biomass. PrimaLoft® Bio insulation will only biodegrade when exposed to the microbes in specific environments so, the insulation remains highly durable throughout its usable life cycle in a garment. This technology will not change the performance, look or feel of the garment.
How do you know that PrimaLoft® Bio fibers biodegrade faster? What kind of tests did you perform?
In order to ascertain the biodegradation rate of the fibres, PrimaLoft® Bio has undergone extensive, thorough testing in conditions that simulate landfill environments. This ASTM D5511 testing has verified the biodegradability of PrimaLoft® Bio fibres. In accelerated test conditions simulating a landfill environment (ASTM D5511), PrimaLoft® Bio fibres have reached near complete biodegradation in 365 days, a highly accelerated rate as compared to the negligible degradation observed in standard polyester, under the same conditions. Complete biodegradation is defined as the point where gases are no longer being emitted from the material, indicating that only natural elements remain. Testing in marine environments is currently ongoing, and we are pleased with initial findings.
What was the development timeline? When will consumers see the technology?
Developed by PrimaLoft's team of scientists and engineers, beginning in 2014, it took two years to research, one year to develop and one year to test using a third-party laboratory. PrimaLoft® Bio is expected to be in consumers’ hands fall 2020.
What problem does it solve?
The textile industry is the second dirtiest industry globally second only to oil. PrimaLoft was determined to find a solution at the material level that addressed the issue of plastics in the environment. PrimaLoft® Bio directly addresses this issue by significantly decreasing the time it takes for synthetic insulation to biodegrade. PrimaLoft is intent on pushing sustainability standards beyond recycling to biodegradability, because recycling alone is not the answer. PrimaLoft is interested in providing the ultimate solution, as we continue our commitment to being Relentlessly Responsible.
Find out more at primaloft.com/primaloftbio
*75.9% biodegradation in 365 days / *80.3% biodegradation in 394 days under ASTM D5511 conditions.